Effect of Therapeutic Back Massage on Low Back Pain in Taiwanese Postpartum Women: A Randomized Clinical Trial

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Yili Ko, RN, EdD
Department of Nursing, Fu-Jen Catholic University, Taipei county, Taiwan
Hsiu-Jung Lee, MSN
Taipei City Hospital –HepingFuyou Branch, Taipei, Taiwan

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to understand the back massage (BM) as one of the complementary alternative nursing strategies

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to understand the effectiveness of back massage for improving postpartum women's low back pain

Background: Low back pain can be very uncomfortable and can affect a woman’s vigor lead to difficulties for postpartum women’s role responsibilities. And health-care providers are challenged in finding the best strategies to assist women to manage these discomforts

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the back massage (BM) for postpartum women to relieve low back pain symptom.

Method: An experimental, two-groups pretest and posttest design was conducted from February 2012 to May 2012. Sixty participants were assigned randomly to either an intervention or a control group. Participants in both groups received the same care except for BM. The intervention group received a 20-minute BM per day for five consecutive days. Sessions were administered by a certified massage therapist.

Results: BM could effectively relieve low back pain. Significantly reduction in the intervention group measured by Visual Analogue Scale (PVAS) than in the control group after the BM (B = -1.78, P < .001).

Conclusion: Nurses should assess low back pain symptom and develop alternative strategies to manage this symptoms during postpartum in order to increase maternal quality of life.

Keywords:  back massage, postpartum low back pain, randomized controlled trial